Healthcare providers support a call for patient education to encourage patients to engage in healthy behaviors, but there is little in the literature that explores how healthcare providers are actually accomplishing this. Healthcare practitioners today are placing greater emphasis on prevention of illness and disease, not just treatment because behaviors such as physical activity and healthier eating decrease the risk of many illnesses. The role of the nurse practitioner (NP) is multifaceted and growing; therefore, NPs can make an important contribution in the healthcare industry by addressing the need to educate patients about healthy behaviors. A mixed method, cross-sectional, descriptive study was performed to help answer the research question most effectively: How do nurse practitioners educate adult patients about healthy diets and exercise? The most common method nurse practitioners use to educate their patients on healthy behaviors is discussion. Although not always successful, NPs can individualize patient education by listening and assessing them prior to the education that can assist with counseling. Discussion of the risks and benefits of behavior changes, as well as praise when changes occur, can help motivate patients. NPs are keeping in mind that every patient is different and each patient needs a tailored plan. These findings can contribute to increasing the effectiveness of patient education and optimizing future outcomes for nurse practitioners along with other healthcare providers. Further research to expand on themes uncovered during this study include barriers, motivation, interaction, and goal setting and can stimulate continued dialog to help improve education and outcomes. This study was performed in hopes of providing NPs opportunities to be more effective and improve future health related outcomes.
|Commitee:||Akin-Palmer, Judy, Zerwekh, JoAnn|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Adult education, Nursing, Health education|
|Keywords:||Activity, Education, Health prevention, Healthy behavior, Healthy eating, Nurse practitioners|
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